Sorsogon Representative Salvador Escudero III, the father of Senator Francis Escudero, died Monday of complications from colon cancer, the House of Representatives said.
The senator said his father died in his sleep past 3 a.m. Monday.
The late Sorsogon lawmaker, who was former Agriculture Secretary and minister of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture during the time of late President Ferdinand Marcos, was battling cancer for more than two years.
He was 69 years old.
Representative Escudero was a former director of the Bureau of Animal Industry in 1975 to 1984, dean of University of the Philippines (UP)-Los Baños College of Veterinary Medicine, and former director of UP Veterinary Hospital.
The late lawmaker finished his Veterinary Medicine at UP-Los Baños in 1963 and took up Tropical Veterinary Medicine at the University of Queensland, Australia, in 1968.
Mourning his passing is the Department of Education (DepEd), which credited his push for education reforms.
"An ideal education advocate, he matches his cause with prodigious research, untiring legislative work as well as generous sharing of his well- rounded knowledge on education issues," the department said.
As a sign of honor, the flag at the DepEd Central Office in Pasig City is raised at half-mast.
Senators, meanwhile, unanimously approved Resolution 834 expressing condolence to the congressman's family.
"The Senate expresses its profound sympathy and sincere condolence on the death of Representative Salvador Escudero III. He was a dedicated and committed lawmaker, who religiously attended and participated in the plenary sessions and committee hearings of the House of Representatives. He continued to serve the interest of the people in spite of his frail condition during the past years," the resolution stated.
His remains are open to public viewing at 3:30 p.m. at Mt. Carmel Shrine Parish in Broadway Centrum, Quezon City.
The House of Representatives is set to hold a funeral service for the late Sorsogon lawmaker on Wednesday. His remains will be brought to Sorsogon on Thursday.
As this developed, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) said it may appoint a "caretaker" congressman for the first district of Sorsogon following the death of Escudero.
Commissioner Rene Sarmiento said the proximity of Escudero's death to the next elections makes it impossible for Comelec to hold special elections in the district.
"We don't have the time anymore. It is already impossible to hold special elections already since it must be one year or more," said Sarmiento.
Section 4 of Republic Act 7166 or the Synchronized National and Local Elections law provides that "in case a permanent vacancy shall occur in the Senate or House of Representatives at least one year before the expiration of the term, the Commission shall call and hold a special election to fill the vacancy."
"The option left is for the Lower House to just appoint a caretaker congressman. One that is from an adjacent district," Sarmiento said.
The Comelec has already set the filing of the certificates of candidacy for all elective posts from October 1 to 5.(Kathrina Alvarez/HDT/Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)
Type the code from the image